Scott County Times from Forest, Mississippi on February 28, 2001 · Page 1
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Scott County Times from Forest, Mississippi · Page 1

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Forest, Mississippi
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Wednesday, February 28, 2001
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MTAC board seat is vacant East Central region needs a voice. See Editorial, 4A FCA to present ..... Index EditorialOpinions. 2-3 A Deaths 4A,8A Our Town 4A.10A Lifestyles 5-7A Sports 1-2B Classifieds 3-5B Wednesday RninShnwers V High: 61 Low: 52 'Cemetery Club'r? .1 V accasmwea ther. cam taith Landing WmUiar Pravtdar See Page 18A for your 1 Vol. 62, No. 09 testis 33 'Madeline in March' to begin March 3 at FPL The Forest Public Library will be hosting a special program for area children this Saturday, March 3, beginning at 10 a.m. The free program "Madeline in March," will feature the Madeline books and videos, games and activities, giv-aways, and a French cooking school. Mitzi Breland, Scott County Extension Nutrition Educator, will be accompanied by Chef Combo as they introduce the children to nutritional French cuisine. The program is a "Saturday Morning Book Buddies Event," sponsored in part by the Mississippi Library Commission, Central Mississippi Regional Library System, and the Forest Friends of the Library. Library offers state, fed tax forms to the public State and federal tax forms are available at the Forest Public Library. The library is receiving 2000 tax forms throughout the tax season. Standards forms are on dis play in the library and are available free of charge. Reproducible forms are avail able for the cost of copying. For more information concerning this community service, please contact the library at 469-1481. 'Miss Morton' program winners are announced Megan Tramill was crowned the new Miss Morton last week. Crystal Chambers was selected as the first runner-up and Jennifer Kittrell was the second runner-up. Alicia Nicole "Nikki" Torrence was the winner of the Brandi Booth Memorial Award. Taylor BriAnn Tucker was selected as the Infant Miss Morton. First runner-up was Ally Elizabeth Purvis and Victoria Miranda Clapp was the second runner-up. Desaray Phipps was named as the Baby Miss Morton with Hannah Lee Walton be selected as first runner-up. Adiya Shaybriuna Lemon as the second runner-up. Austin Fortenberry was selected as the new Baby Master Morton. Ian Scott Lawrence was the first runner-up and Cory Allen Lott, Jr. was named as the second runner-up. Graycee Alisabeth Wooten was named as the new Toddler Miss Morton. Madison Clair Caldwell was the first runner-up and Bethany Gracelyn Smith was named as the second runner-up. Brittany Michelle Cesason was crowned as Tiny Miss Morton. Allison Reeves was selected as the first runner-up and Deneshia Harper was named as the second runner-up. Jordan Leigh Grant was crowned as the new Miss Little Morton. Andrea Kenandra Hollis was the first runner-up and Mary Frances Porter was second runner-up. The new Miss Pre-Teen Morton was Taylor Hughes. First runner-up was Erin Jones and second runner-up was Kayla Leigh Armstrong. Rose Anna Reid was crowned as the new Miss Teen Morton. Ashley Nicole Wallace was picked as the first runner-up and Cierra Paige Phillips was named as the second runner-up. Nikki Torrence was selected as the new Junior Miss Morton. Nike Grieves was selected as the first runner-up and Shanna April Carroll was named as the second runner-up. local weather rxars Nave, i Copyright 2001, THE SCOTT COUNTY Property damage By DAVID HAWKINS Tunes StaffWriter For the Henry Smith family of the Pea Ridge Community in northern Scott County, Saturday night's storms are a reminder of just how fast hours of hard work can be lost in a few seconds. "From the time we went into the hallway of the house until it was all passed over only seemed like a few seconds," said Henry Sanders of the storm that severely damaged his chicken houses and demolished his small-engine repair business. "All our children were home as well as several of their friends. I'm just thankful to God no one was hurt. Tools and buildings can be replaced but the lives of loved ones can't." The storms approached from the Broiler houses 1Mb. J -fa J- ! Wed ,:.n TMn aMtHfgfrtr IH III " II -....--i-w..- millill (imr l.ama.ai.aji One of the four chicken houses owned by Henry and Nancy Smith was destroyed by a storm that passed through the Pea Ridge Community about 9:30 p.m. Friday night. There was extensive property damage but no injuries were reported. The storm system that struck the Smith farm in Scott County later spawned a tornado that killed five in Pontotoc and did millions of dollars of damage across the Delta and Northeast Mississippi.fjimes staff photo by David Hawkins) Schools face delay of textbook purchases By EMILY WAGSTER Associated Press Writer Mississippi legislators are singing the no-money blues this session. They say tax collections are sluggish. Budgets are tight. Everyone will feel a pinch. Some lawmakers are adding another verse to the song: Education will suffer. "We are dismantling every single education program ... bit by bit by bit by bit," Sen. Hob Bryan, D-Amory, charged during a recent debate. The Senate's money meister, Appropriations Chairman Jack Gordon, says times are tough but leaders are trying to help the schools, not hurt them. For years, Mississippi's education system has languished at the bottom of many national rankings, from teacher pay to test scores. "This is not about dismantling the adequate education program This is not about dismantling the education enhancement funds," Gordon, D-Okolona, said in response to Bryan. "You never see me come to this podium and see me try to dismantle anything that's educational." Bryan, and those who think like him, point to some bills that are still wending their way through the legislative system and others that have not gone anywhere. One bill that's still alive would loosen restrictions on money that has been earmarked the last several years for textbooks and classroom supplies. That money could go for general edu Comedy debuts March 9-1 1 at the -vi Aj icKets at area exto mtnaM ifmmWMlb Mmmft flaw FEBRUARY 28, 2001 TIMES stoma heavy, but no injuries or death herefrom same storm that later kitted five southwest, and according to Nancy Smith the first sound they heard was a shrill whine, followed by the distinctive locomotive sound often associated with severe storms and tornadoes. "We were watching television and keeping up with the warnings when we heard them say the storm was going to pass near northern Scott County and Walnut Grove," said Nancy Smith. "The lights blinked oft then came back on and we thought the storm had past with doing much damage. It wasn't until we got outside that we saw just how bad things were." The Smiths lost one broiler house and three other were severely damaged or slightly damaged. Just north of the Smith's residence Kaye Myers was not home when the destroyed by high Li?'? " I ' yr - ,i. , Kit Vi;v wrafc storm passed over her trailer home, ripping a porch and roof from the structure. "It was strange in a way," said Smith. "It tore the porch and roof off the trailer and never bothered any of the pictures hanging on the walls." By Tuesday insurance adjusters had looked at the damage at both locations and clean-up had begun. A spokesman for the Scott County Sheriff's Office said reports of major damage in the county appeared to isolated to the Pea Ridge Community. Later that night, a tornado packing winds of more than 150 miles per hour killed five people, injured dozens more and destroyed or damaged hundreds of homes in north Mississippi, authorities said. winds n if cational purposes basically for whatever districts need to stave off financial problems. It's illegal for any school district to end the fiscal year with a deficit Lawmakers say it won't kill schools to delay the purchase of some textbooks or supplies. Barbara Koppe, a 5th grade teacher at Harrison County's Pineville Elementary School, says legislators need to be more creative in finding solutions to financial woes. "We take so much out of our own pockets every year to buy supplies," said Koppe, who has opened her wallet for everything from book bags to bulletin board supplies. A proposal that never got far this legislative session was to remove a portion of state law that ties teacher pay raises to economic growth Legislators in 2000 passed a five-year, mdtimuTion dollar plan designed to lift Mississippi's meager teacher salaries to the projected Southeastern average. The plan included a provision that raises would automatically click into place in any given year only if the state economy grows by 5 percent that year. If growth is below 5 percent, legislators must take a separate vote on the question of raising teacher pay that year. "That makes it not a commitment at all. That makes it a lie," says Maryann Graczyk, president of the Mississippi American Federation of Teachers. Lawmakers are working on a fiscal 2002 budget that's based on a 3.7 percent growth projection. Some say even 3.7 percent might be overly optimistic. Pa life fail The five were dead on arrival at Pontotoc Hospital following the Saturday night storms. County Coroner Kim Bedford confirmed the number Sunday night after some confusion. Early reports put the number dead at seven. Ricky Jaggers, director of Emergency Management in Pontotoc, said all the missing have been accounted for, but authorities will continue to search for more bodies Monday. Victims' relatives packed hospital waiting rooms, shocked at the power unleashed by the tornado. My cousins were in a house that got blown away," Bobbye Roye of Amory said by phone from a hospital in nearby Tupelo. "They blew across a holler and landed on the side of "Rflnipniflcl teds seiitere Former chaimwi of Central Industries may face timmfefadprisonsystem By SID SALTER Times Editor The former chairman of a Scott County-based poultry rendering plant that in November, 2000 received one of the stiffest criminal penalties in history for wastewater violations dating back to the 1970s faces sentencing this week Former Central Industries Chairman Tam H. Etheridge appeared before U.S. District Court Judge Henry Wingate on Tuesday as the sentencing hearing began. Choctaw Maid Farms Inc. CEO Etherise, the CEO of Choctaw Maid Farms, pleaded guilty to three counts of criminal negligence last fall for his role in the federal pollution case over the rendering plant near Forest. Etheridge could get three years in prison and $300,000 in fines. But sources close to the probe said the businessman is more likely to receive a prison sentence between "90 days to a little over one year". Sources close to the proceedings said they expected the hearing to last "three or four days". In November, Wingate said Central Industries Inc. must pay $14 million for discharge slaughter-house waste into creek that supplies drinking water to the capital city of Jackson. The fine was the fifth-largest in history behind the $20 million penalty paid in the Exxon Valdez oil spill, said David McLeod of the Environmental Protection Agency. "This penalty will make all corporations take notice of the seriousness of the environmental criminal laws," McLeod said. Former U.S. Attorney Brad Pigott called the sentence a tough punishment for corporate executives in Mississippi who disobey environmental laws. The company will pay $13 million in criminal fines and $1 million in restitution to the Mississippi Department of Environmental FOREST, MISSISSIPPI 50? another hill. They were all dead." The vast storm system that swept across the eastern half of the nation also dumped more than 20 inches of snow on northern Minnesota. Blowing snow closed hundreds of miles of highways in Minnesota and South Dakota. In Arkansas, a 2-year-old boy died Sunday of injuries suffered when a twister destroyed the family's home in Fulton County on Saturday. His parents and a brother also were injured, authorities said. Mississippi Gov. Ronnie Musgrove left meetings in Washington Sunday to see the damage for himself. He declared parts of the county a disaster area and was called and received for federal assistance from President Bush. re Quality over the next five years. In addition to penalties, Central Industries was ordered to publish a detailed apology to residents of Scott County in today's edition of The Scott County Tunes and Thursday's edition of The Clarion-Ledger, to reach readers in where the rendering plant is located. The ad is published on Page 12A. The largest fine in U.S. history was $26 million paid by Royal Caribbean Cruise company for water pollution in Florida and New York, McLeod said. Five poultry processors sent waste to the Central Industries plant and jointly owned it, or were related to companies that did. Lady Forest Farms Inc. and Marshall Durbin Farms Inc. were indicated along with Central Industries, B.C. Rogers, McCarty Farms and Choctaw Maid for the violations. In the sentencing agreement last fall, the five companies were dismissed as criminal defendants in the case, but some of their owners still face charges, McLeod said. Several top officials at the chicken processing companies will be sentenced in coming weeks, McLeod said. John R. McCarty, former president of McCarty Farms Inc., pleaded guilty last fall to his role in a federal pollution case over a rendering plant near Forest. McCarty entered the plea Thursday before U.S. District Judge Henry Wingate to one count of criminal negligence. McCarty was vice president of the board of Central Industries. John M. Rogers Jr., operated of B.C Rogers poultry, pleaded guilty in June to one count of negligently violating the Clean Water Act. In December, Terrance Miller, the former chief operating officer for Central Industries, pleaded guilty to one felony pollution charge and agreed to cooperate with investigators. McCarty, Rogers and Miller are also awaiting sentencing. ?

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